Creamed Finnan Haddie on Toast

Recipe Introduction:


This wonderful recipe was submitted by Willard from Ohio, being a baker of great breads it is not surprising that his family recipe is served on Sourdough toast. This is how Willard introduced the recipe to me:

“This is a very traditional dish and can be served for any meal. In Scotland, if it is served for dinner, it is usually accompanied by boiled or mashed potatoes instead of toast. This has been our family’s Christmas morning meal for at least 4 generations. I have been making this dish for over 45 years. This serves 6 fairly generously.”

Creamed Finnan Haddie on Toast

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Creamed Finnan Haddie on Toast


  • (Serves 6 fairly generously)
  • 2 lb Finnan Haddie.
  • 2 Medium onions, diced, about 12-oz.
  • 2-cups of milk.
  • 2-cups heavy cream.
  • 1-tsp Colman’s English mustard powder.
  • Dash Cayenne pepper.
  • 6-oz unslated butter, divided use.
  • 3/4-Cup plain flour.
  • 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced on diagonal, whites and greens.
  • 1 bunch parsley, minced.
  • White wine.
  • Lemon juice.
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper.
  • 10 hard boiled eggs, peeled, quartered lengthwise.
  • 6-8 slices crusty toast, buttered, torn into half pieces (Sourdough is great).


  1. Melt 2 oz (1/2 stick) butter in bottom of a large sauce pan over medium heat. When foam subsides, add diced onion and reduce heat to low. Sweat onion until tender. Do not brown. Add milk, cream, mustard, cayenne, and raise heat to bring to high simmer without boiling.
  2. Meanwhile, melt remaining butter in small saucepan and whisk in flour, heating and stirring until roux has a shortbread or light butterscotch aroma – do not brown. Set aside to cool. Remove Finnan Haddie from package and lower gently into milk/cream mixture and poach for exactly 4 minutes. Immediately remove fish with slotted spatula or spoon to a plate. Let rest until cool enough to touch. Peel skin from fillets. Do not flake fish.
  3. Place skin in a small pan with additional milk to just cover, and simmer on low heat for 15 minutes. Strain into milk/cream mixture. With milk/cream mixture at high simmer, use a wire whisk to scoop up some of the roux and whisk it into the milk/cream mixture, about 2 tablespoons at a time. Let roux dissolve and observe texture of milk/cream mixture – You won’t need all of the roux – it keeps in the refrigerator for several weeks, and is useful for thickening stocks, gravies, and sauces. The soup will take a while to thicken, so be conservative with the roux. Adjust thickness of soup with additional roux or additional milk.
  4. Add a splash of white wine and lemon juice, stir in green onions, season well with plenty of white pepper. Don’t salt until after fish is added back in – the fish carries a fair amount of salt into the dish. Break Finnan Haddie into 2” pieces and place gently back into soup. Fold in green onions and hard boiled eggs and heat to a simmer. Test for seasoning. Place buttered toast pieces in heated soup bowls and ladle soup over toast. Garnish with minced parsley. Some people enjoy a splash of Tabasco sauce with this dish.

Serving Suggestions:

Place buttered toast pieces in heated soup bowls and ladle soup over toast. Garnish with minced parsley. Some people enjoy a splash of Tabasco sauce with this dish.

One Response to Creamed Finnan Haddie on Toast

  1. Paula
    September 19, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    Thanks Willard from Ohio!! I combined some of your ingredients and tip with a recipe I had from a cookbook and it turned out delicious!